JOHNS ISLAND, S.C. (WCBD) – Charleston County School District (CCSD) leaders presented plans to the public for a new $41 million elementary school on Johns Island, expected to be complete by 2024.
The new school is expected to be built near River Road and Brownswood Road on Johns Island. So far the school is planned to serve nearly 700 students.
“We only have one middle school and one high school in District 9. That is really going to build a really big sense of the community for kids that are different than other parents of the district,” says Michelle Faust, a CCSD parent.
The area where the school will be built is surrounded by wetlands, which has raised some concern, but CCSD leaders say the protected lands won’t be impacted.
“We can’t impact the wetlands because then we have to do wetland surveying which is a huge ordeal,” says Angela Barnette, the Director of Planning and Real Estate for CCSD.
Parents say one possible drawback of the school is traffic; they aren’t sure the area can handle the influx of people.
“The partnership with the city and the county is important for traffic. CCSD can’t do it alone it really has to be a partnership with the state,” says Faust.
“It will be really important we make sure that we don’t have our younger kids on buses for what could be up to an hour around Johns Island,” says Ashley Burke, a CCSD parent.
The schools in the District 9 area are projected to grow to nearly 1,200 within the next five years. Parents want to make sure each school in the area will create an equal opportunity for students.
“The school district needs to decide to invest and make sure those kids and the underserved parts of the Johns Island community can continue to exceed and excel in this new school structure we are building,” says Burke.
School leaders say the next step is getting the plans approved by the county board in August.